Resonance: Weekly Curator Picks

Resonance

Bjork comes to terms with heartache on her deepest cut to date.

Screen Shot 2015-02-05 at 1.26.19 PMOn her latest single, the Icelandic chanteuse details the breakdown of her relationship. “Stonemilker” is a beautiful, gut wrenching, torturous requiem that nearly clocks in at seven minutes in length. The former Sugarcubes singer delivers a personal confessional that we can find solace and comfort in.

 

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CURATOR’S CHOICE

Big booming drums and swirling synths transform lush, radio-ready modern pop into something more adventurous.

Screen Shot 2015-02-05 at 1.29.37 PMDella Memoria’s Beautiful Dream is haunting, hushed, bombastic and dramatic. Emily Sholes’s gorgeous vocals glide from throaty croon to swoon-inducing soar over a moody, sometimes experimental backdrop of raucous rhythms, pulsing churn and ethereal balladry. For fans of Lorde, Phantogram.

 

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A pioneer of electronic music, Aphex Twin breaks out sparse jazzy beats.

Screen Shot 2015-02-05 at 1.35.03 PMAfter years of sparse releases, we get two in five months! The title hints at what’s inside. While Computer Controlled Acoustic Instruments Pt. 2 is reminiscent of the meditative tracks from Drukqs, what really stands out here is Alarm Will Sound’s excellent 2005 acoustic take on Aphex Twin.

 

 

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What To Listen To On Groundhog Day

Climate experts aScreen Shot 2015-02-02 at 9.30.32 AMre speculating that Punxatuwney Phil may be snowed-in this Groundhog Day. And that’s just fine, really. Most of us working at Pandora’s Oakland office wouldn’t mind a little more winter (we could use the rain). While contemplating a rodent and his shadow, we tried to build a Groundhog Day mixtape. But it wasn’t so easy. Sure, we could play an endless loop of songs by The Groundhogs. But even the most ardent Tony McPhee fans need a break from obscure, British blues-rock.

So here’s what we did instead. We made a deep mixtape of songs from Bill Murray soundtracks. Why? Because Groundhog Day is synonymous with Bill Murray. Those unfamiliar with the 1993 romantic comedy by the same name need not worry. Bill Murray’s Soundtracks is loaded with songs and scores from movies spanning Bill Murray’s entire career. And thanks to film director/screenwriter Wes Anderson, this Screen Shot 2015-02-02 at 9.29.26 AMmixtape is much hipper than we thought it would be (Bill Murray was in seven of Anderson’s films thus far). And of course we’ve also peppered the mix with tunes from Ghostbusters, Lost In Translation, Caddyshack, Where The Buffalo Roam, Zombieland, St. Vincent and tons of others. So as we celebrate Groundhog Day, let’s take a moment to remember that Bill Murray once said, “I don’t want to be that guy mumbling into his drink at a bar.”

Resonance: Weekly Curator Picks

Resonance

It’s a rare EDM album that succeeds as a full-length, but Above & Beyond broke the mold.

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The trance trio’s experience producing and DJing for over a decade is evident on We Are All We Need. Swooshing synths intertwine with emotional pop vocals, creating an uplifting EDM experience touching on progressive house and chillstep, while remaining firmly rooted in trance.

 

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CURATOR’S CHOICE

London dream-pop tunesmiths drop a gorgeous EP with guest vocals from Slowdive’s Rachel Goswell.

Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 12.21.54 PMLondon’s Liu Bei is an indie-pop quintet with shoegaze leanings. The title-track off their Goodness EP is one of those bittersweet love songs worthy of being blasted from a boombox hoisted by John Cusack in 1989. But “Fields” boasts a gossamer cameo from Slowdive’s Rachel Goswell.

 

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50 BILLION Thumbs

Just a few years ago, Jason Derulo stopped by our offices to celebrate receiving the 10 billionth thumb on Pandora. Today, I am proud to share that we have passed 50 billion thumbs. 50 billion. That’s roughly seven thumbs for every person on Earth.

As milestones go, this one is particularly meaningful. Our entire mission is to give listeners the ability to personalize their experience. Thumbs give each listener the power to make Pandora personal to them. Every thumb up and thumb down has not only made your stations better, but helped us make better song choices for every listener. This is a serious group effort – so, thanks!

As you can imagine, it took a lot of songs to hit 50 billion thumbs. While we can’t share every single one, we did want to highlight some of the more momentous thumb recipients along the way.

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Jack White’s Musical Lineage

Our curation team collaborated with in-house artist Carolyn Jaeger to produce this graphic of Jack White’s musical lineage, layered in the rings and bark of his own music. Vining upwards are the branches and leaves of the artists he’s produced and/or collaborated with. And of course his tree’s roots are robust with the influences that helped birth his sound, tone and vision. Click the image for detail.

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Resonance: Weekly Curator Picks

Resonance

Fall Out Boy proves once again with American Beauty/American Psycho there’s still room at the top of the charts for actual rock bands.

Screen Shot 2015-01-23 at 11.23.01 AMSure, Fall Out Boy is now far from an actual rock band (and well removed from the rockers they once were). But they whip up a gloriously hook-laden stadium pop confection, borrowing melodies from Suzanne Vega and even reworking The Munsters’ theme!

 

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CURATOR’S CHOICE

Former Company Of Thieves vocalist makes a name for herself as a solo artist.

Screen Shot 2015-01-23 at 11.37.31 AMLos Angeles based Genevieve swaps indie rock for alt-pop with the release of the incredibly infectious Colors (Single). Backed with distorted guitars, electronic keyboards, synths and a boom-bap beat; she sings about everyday struggles with a message of inspiration, repeatedly chanting, “Show your true colors, girl!”

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Inside The Collection: Weekly Curator Picks

Rootsy chanteuse Brandi Carlile delivers a harmonic departure with The Eye (Single) 

Screen Shot 2015-01-16 at 12.53.22 PMIf Brandi Carlile’s new single is indicative of what her upcoming album The Firewatcher’s Daughter sounds like, we can expect a slight departure. This song is enveloped in timeless, three-part, vocal harmonies that give more depth to heady lyrics like, “You can dance in a hurricane/ But only if you’re standing in the eye.”

 

Two brothers drop hits on Mike WiLL Made-It’s Ear Drummer Records.

Screen Shot 2015-01-16 at 12.54.44 PMSlim Jimmy and Swae Lee came from Mississippi to Atlanta, got dibbs on the super producer’s beats, and Rae Sremmurd‘s SremmLife was born. In addition to Mike WiLL, Sonny Digital, Young Chop and Soundz create the perfect soundscape.  The bass will make you want to hit the club with Nicki Minaj and Young Thug. Read More →

GRAMMYs – Who do you predict will win?

Music is at the heart of everything we do here at Pandora – and we know it’s equally as important to each of you. In honor of this year’s GRAMMY Awards, we thought it would be fun to look at your listening patterns and try to predict who will win big at this year’s awards.

Historically, you are pretty good at predicting who will win, simply based on how you listen to music throughout the year. To come up with this year’s listener predictions, we looked back at the past few years of nominees and winners, how you engaged with those songs, and applied that to this year’s class.

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Inside The Collection: Weekly Curator Picks 

Artist Debuts 

Sofi De La Torre

Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 8.21.31 AMAlthough she hasn’t charted yet stateside, Berlin-based Spanish singer-songwriter Sofi De La Torre has already made an impression in the US, with publications like Time praising her latest single “Vermillion” as, “The gloriously gloomy song of the summer” and by Billboard as, “One of the best songs of the year.” Teaming up with German house producers Andre Crom and Chi Thanh, the remix version of “Vermillion” was recently spun by Tiesto on BBC Radio 1.

Launch a Sofi De La Torre here to hear what all the fuss is about!

Juan Wauters

Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 8.24.13 AMJuan Wauters (his real name) is solo project of the singer for Queens-based DIY/garage band The Beets. His debut project N.A.P. North American Poetry has appeared on numerous Best Of 2014 lists and is considered by bloggers and critics as one of the year’s underrated and overlooked releases. Retaining much of The Beets punk/Beatle-esque pop influences, he incorporates personal songwriting elements in addition to Tropicalia and South American folk – which he encountered growing up in Uruguay. Read More →